Thursday, July 30, 2020

Students Raise Funds for COVID-19 Emergency Response in World Vision’s 5K Campaign Challenge

Students across the Philippines showed their support to the children and families affected by the pandemic by participating in World Vision’s 5K Campaign Challenge, a fundraising initiative for the benefit of the child-focused organization’s COVID-19 emergency response.
The 5K Campaign Challenge’s goal is to encourage the participating students to fundraise among their peers and relatives to help affected families receive cash support to buy their basic needs. 
Not only did the students were able to accomplish their goal of supporting 5 families, some of them went beyond by assisting up to 50 families.
The students who participated in the 5K Campaign Challenge, coming from schools such as Singapore School Cebu, Enderun Colleges, De La Salle University of Manila, De La Salle Zobel, and Noah’s Ark Angel Learning Center, were able to accumulate the amount of PHP 280,000 during the period of May 1 to June 30, 2020. The total amount they raised will be used to support over 280 COVID-19 affected families.
In a Virtual Congratulatory Event hosted by World Vision, the following students were recognized because of their large contribution to make the initiative a great success.
The Top Advocates or students who encouraged others to join the campaign are Gabbie Ecito (Noah’s Ark Angel Learning Center), Reese San Juan (Singapore School Cebu) and Maegan Yap (Singapore School Cebu).
The First Achievers or students who first achieved the target goal of 5 families and above are Justine Romero (Singapore School Cebu), Marianne Laciste (De La Salle University of Manila), and Kyle Villapando (De La Salle Zobel).
The Top Fundraisers of the 5K Campaign Challenge are Chloe Suarez (Singapore School Cebu), Bede Capulong (Singapore School Cebu), and Chelsea Abcede (Enderun Colleges).
“I’m extending my gratitude to World Vision for giving young people like us the trust in what we can do. To those who are interested in joining a child-focused advocacy like 5K Campaign Challenge or the other initiatives by World Vision, just try it. You will learn a lot of things from it, you can be better, and help many along the way,” said Chloe Suarez, the Top Fundraiser from Singapore School Cebu who was able to raise PHP 50,000 for the initiative.
World Vision Celebrity Ambassadors Gretchen Ho and Janina Vela led the 5K Campaign Challenge by inspiring everyone to unite and become #OneForChildren especially during this challenging period.
Gretchen Ho began her speech with delight knowing that students are stepping up to give what they have for those in need. “Through this campaign, young people are given an opportunity to bless others” said Gretchen. 
Meanwhile, Janina Vela emphasized on what really counts in helping others at a time such as this. “It really does not matter how big your bank account is. What matters is how big your heart is,” shared Janina.
Also supporting the 5K Campaign Challenge are World Vision’s corporate partners Promate and Urbanize. 
“On behalf of World Vision, we would like to thank and congratulate those who participated in the 5K Campaign Challenge, especially to our young students for going the extra mile. We are very humbled by everyone’s commitment to serve during this time despite of COVID-19,” said Mr. Rommel Fuerte, World Vision National Director.
“We are happy to announce that throughout the start of our COVID-19 Emergency Response, we were able to support over 5.2 million people, and that the 1.2 million from the total number are children thanks to the help of our donors and partners,” Mr. Fuerte added.
To know more about World Vision’s 5K Campaign Challenge and its initiative against COVID-19, please visit You may also follow /worldvisionph on Facebook and @worldvisionphl on Instagram for updates.
About World Vision
World Vision is a global Christian relief, development and advocacy organization dedicated to working with children, families, and communities to overcome poverty and injustice. World Vision serves all people, regardless of religion, race, ethnicity, or gender.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Making a Comeback Post-COVID

It is a testament to the resilience of Filipinos to find opportunity in adversity. Consumption shift has been evident in the past months since the quarantine period started, with more Filipinos finding ways to create an economic activity to adjust to the conditions dictated by the pandemic. From this and the current consumer behavior, we have learned the following to help our businesses thrive post-COVID.

Optimizing E-Commerce

From small households selling home-cooked meals through Facebook and big companies establishing their own online shopping sites, businesses have turned to e-commerce to reach customers. At Hanabishi, we quickly put a system in place once the quarantine period began. In less than two months, our e-commerce facility was up and running through our website, We also provided our customers the option to have their orders delivered or picked up at our warehouse.

Recognizing Your Company’s Strengths and Capabilities

Our business may not be directly about health and safety, but we we were able to adjust to the new normal by relying on our strengths and capabilities.

We noticed that more households are making their homes the center of their lives, that they are finding ways to make their lives comfortable. They have started to pursue their passion for the arts, baking, cooking, among others to make their lives less stress-free and more comfortable. Having the best home experience became their goal.

When we learned that interest in baking products has increased, we knew that our baking equipment will be in demand so we made sure that they would be readily available through our website. The same thing goes for our cooking equipment when we noticed how Filipinos have started to bring the Samgyupsal experience to their homes. 

We considered all these in reviewing our operating model. We relied on our strength as an appliance manufacturer and boosted our capability to supply what the market demands.

Implementing Short-Term Interventions and Streamlining Non-Core Assets

Cutting costs, securing liquidity, and adjusting production have helped us maintain our operations during this period. Conserving resources can help businesses last longer.

Reinventing value chains must also be considered as the pandemic has greatly disrupted the supply chain of global trade. Businesses must learn to streamline their non-core assets and activities.

Learning to Adapt

As I mentioned before, we saw Filipinos flex their entrepreneurial skills in the past months. We saw them selling their own recipes online, creating new businesses to augment their income. It is inspiring to see how quickly our kababayans adapted to the new normal. Speed and adaptability are the competencies we need during a time of crisis.

Creating a Recovery Plan

Once consumer confidence returns, we must be ready to respond. Have recovery plan that should be able to address what happens the pandemic. Re-engineer your business to provide clarity and genuine stability amid the chaos and take time to improve the skills of your people. Our managers should be able to envision our objective. To do this, we business owners must provide them with the necessary knowledge and confidence to further their execution skills.

Recognizing That Recovery Will Be Gradual

There’s no quick-fix solution to the challenges that businesses face today. As the world adapts to the changes brought about by the pandemic, businesses should  be mindful of consumer sentiment.

We have learned from past crises that it takes months and years to return to what we deem as the normal way of doing things. Recovery from the 2003 SARS pandemic, the 9/11 attacks, and the 2008 financial crisis took some time, and we can expect the same thing with the COVID situation.

More importantly, we have learned from these crises that we will eventually recover. Getting there may take some time, but we will get there. Our resilience and faith in our abilities and in one another will see us through.

Jasper Ong is the president of Hanabishi, one of the country’s leading appliance brands. He took over the day-to-day business and management of the brand when his parents retired in 2006. He is credited for growing Hanabishi’s sales revenue by 30% year-on-year following its nationwide expansion and introduction of new product lines. He is a graduate of Manufacturing Engineering and Management at De La Salle University.


About Hanabishi:

Spanning more than three decades, Hanabishi has established its reputation as a provider of affordable yet quality home products that lasts, which paved the way for its tagline “Kapartner from Start to Forever.” Hanabishi Home Appliances are available at leading appliance stores nationwide. For more information about Hanabishi, please visit like them on Facebook:

Sunday, July 26, 2020

GOLDILOCKS : Amazingly designed theme cakes for our special celebrations!

Themes are a great way to add magic to any celebration! Goldilocks, the country's number one bakeshop, is highlighting the return of their Themed Cakes in stores!

Returning designs include fan favorites such as the Rainbow Unicorn, Safari Adventure, and much more!

Make your next get together extra special with Goldilocks Theme Cakes. Grab these and your favorite treats from select Goldilocks stores across Luzon.

For more information, you may follow @GoldilocksPH on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, or visit the official Goldilocks website at

Thursday, July 23, 2020

Asia CEO, World Vision launch CSR Company of the Year Award

The Asia CEO Awards (ACA) and World Vision Development Foundation (WVDF) are set to recognize organizations in the business community which have embraced and exemplified their commitment to society through corporate social responsibility (CSR).

WVDF National Director Rommel V. Fuerte said the child-focused humanitarian organization is delighted to launch the CSR Company of the Year award at the 11th Asia CEO Awards.

“As our country navigates the new normal, it is imperative that we appreciate the efforts of our partners supporting education, health and nutrition, economic development, disaster risk reduction, child protection and many other contributions to society,” Fuerte added.

ACA Chairman Richard Mills said that “through Asia CEO Awards, the largest business awards in the Asia Pacific Region, the whole country can acknowledge the most accomplished leadership teams and individuals who have demonstrated outstanding successes for their organizations and good will to others.”

Collaboration for COVID-19 Emergency Response

Responding to the current health emergency, World Vision together with its partners has served and assisted over five million people nationwide.

Through the efforts of corporate companies namely St. Theresa’s College of Quezon City HS Alumni Batch ’83, Accenture, Aidea Inc., BHP Shared Services Philippines, Inc., ChekHup, Colgate Palmolive, ComCo Southeast Asia, DTCC, Ellite Ads Corporation, Emerson Electric (Asia) Ltd., Frankie & Friends, GCash, Giftaway, Gifted PH, Grab Philippines, ING Foundation, Inc., and Investagrams, World Vision was able to deploy 17 triage tents and two giant tent halls to hospitals, as well as, provided basic Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) to the frontliners.

Support from other partners from Lazada, Lexus Manila, Inc., Ligo, Medtronic Philippines, Inc., Merck Inc., Microsourcing, Mirth & Yift, Mondelez, PayMaya, PCCW Solutions, Inc., Pilipinas Shell Foundation, Inc., Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc., S.C. Johnson & Son, Inc., Seaoil Philippines, Inc., Security Bank, Shopee, Storm Technologies, Inc., ticket2me, Unilever, and Zalora enabled World Vision's response team to provide families with sanitation kits which contained cleaning alcohol, mouthwash, face mask, and reading materials about hygiene and handwashing.

Disinfectant kits were also supplied to the health facilities in the poorest of the poor communities. To assist those who lost their income, unconditional cash distribution was implemented for the most affected families. About 52 tons of fresh vegetable were also distributed to families.

Finding Purpose in the Age of Pandemic

According to one the learning sessions of the Public Relations Society of the Philippines (PRSP) where WVDF is a part of, solutions that address today’s shifting business mindsets and customer habits are found in companies’ brand purpose, and that what you do to help today will define how people will see you post COVID-19.

Norman Agatep, the president of PRSP, the country's premier organization for communication and public relations (PR) professionals, advised that as companies implement marketing strategies and CSR, they  must remember that first, businesses should protect and support employees and customers as their baseline response to the crisis; second, they should lean towards public service and demonstrate compassion to the communities where they operate.

“Even after the pandemic is over, people will be beyond grateful to companies that have helped spur the economy and have channeled resources to those who can assist in this time of COVID-19,” Agatep added.

Who can join?

ACA President Rebecca Bustamante said “this is a chance for business people to show how driven they are in leading this country back to employment and prosperity for all Filipinos.”

The award is open to corporate and non-corporate organizations with existing CSR programs, with majority of demonstrable results, major new activities or initiatives should have occurred within the current calendar year but may have begun earlier. Entries will be judged according to the following criteria: Leadership Commitment, Sustainability, Workforce Involvement, Relevance and Social Impact.

To nominate entries and to see the complete list of categories and judges, visit or like Deadline for the submission of entries is on August 14, 2020, while the awards night will be on October 13, 2020.

About World Vision

World Vision is a Christian relief, development and advocacy organization dedicated to working with children, their families and communities to overcome poverty and injustice. Inspired by its Christian faith and values, it is dedicated to working with the world’s most vulnerable people. It serves and collaborates with all people regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or gender.

Monday, July 20, 2020

Herbalife Nutrition Survey Reveals Filipinos Need to Close Nutrition Knowledge Gap

Only 19% of Filipino consumers got 50% of the answers correct in a general nutrition knowledge quiz conducted by premiere global nutrition company Herbalife Nutrition.  The Philippines’ score was lower than the Asia Pacific (APAC) average of 23%.

The quiz was administered as part of Herbalife Nutrition’s Asia Pacific Nutrition Myths Survey 2020, which was conducted in March with 5,500 respondents from Australia, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam. To test the nutrition knowledge of the survey participants, the quiz included a total of 48 “True or False” questions spanning nine nutrition areas - general nutrition, protein, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, minerals, caffeine, weight management and breakfast.

“The results of the quiz and the survey show that there is a significant nutrition knowledge gap among Filipinos. We hope to help close the gap to empower them with the nutrition knowledge they need to make better nutrition choices,” said Sridhar Rajagopalan, Senior Director, Sub-Region Head, and General Manager of Herbalife Nutrition Philippines.

Only 7% among those surveyed said that they were extremely confident about their nutrition knowledge. Fifty-four percent claimed that they were only somewhat well-informed.

Filipino consumers, however, expressed that they believe in the importance of balanced nutrition. It is among the top three nutrition advice that they were most interested in along with how to improve ailment/condition through nutrition and managing weight through nutrition.

“This is a good sign, so the next step is helping them achieve this,” Rajagopalan said.

What Filipinos Got Right and Wrong About Nutrition Knowledge

Majority of the Filipino respondents (85%) falsely believe that one needs sufficient calcium intake at any age to optimize peak bone mass for bone health.

“Our peak bone mass (max bone size and strength) is dependent on calcium intake and reaches its peak by age 30. However, sufficient calcium intake throughout life can reduce the risk of osteoporosis,” Rajagopalan said.

When it comes to fats, 68% got it right that fats provide the body with energy but only 42% correctly believed that it helps the body absorb vitamins.

80% correctly said that exercise helps the body rebuild muscles and increase lean muscles. However, 51% falsely believe that protein powder is not a healthy source of protein as compared to protein found in natural foods.

“Protein powder can be as good as protein from natural foods if derived from high-quality sources. For instance, soy protein from soybeans is a complete protein, providing a full range of nine essential amino acids for the body’s nutrition requirements,” Rajagopalan added.

94% of the Filipino consumers were right in their belief that fruits and Vitamin C supplements can help boost immunity and resistance to infection. Among the APAC respondents, they were the highest in this belief.

While 47% of Filipino consumers believed that it is extremely important to be educated with proper and accurate nutrition knowledge, they also said that too much misinformation and myths online prevent them from gaining accurate nutrition knowledge (39%).

The other top barriers were lack of information from government websites and health authorities (22%) and the lack of information from healthcare professionals (17%).

About Herbalife Nutrition Ltd.

Herbalife Nutrition is a global company that has been changing people's lives with great nutrition products and a proven business opportunity for its independent members since 1980. The Company offers high-quality, science-backed products, sold in over 90 countries by entrepreneurial members who provide one-on-one coaching and a supportive community that inspires their customers to embrace a healthier, more active lifestyle. Through the Company’s global campaign to eradicate hunger, Herbalife Nutrition is also committed to bringing nutrition and education to communities around the world.

For more information, please visit

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Here’s how to shop online at Shangri-La Plaza

Missing the mall? Shangri-La Plaza is giving its #ShangCommunity a way to shop for everything they need from the safety of home. The Shang has teamed up with delivery apps JoyRide and MyKuya to help bring Shang brands and products straight to shoppers’ doorsteps! Here’s how to make use of the services.

When purchasing items from a single store, JoyRide is the best option. First, the customer contacts the store directly to order items. Payment options vary depending on the store. After paying, the store then packs the items carefully for the JoyRide driver to pick-up and deliver. The customer can choose to book the JoyRide driver themselves or ask the store to do so on their behalf. Delivery fees will be charged to the customer.

For a shopping spree across several stores in the Shang, MyKuya is the way to go. The app matches customers with their own personal shoppers, who can be instructed on what to purchase. First, download and register on the app, then pin the location on Mandaluyong City/Ortigas. Tap the Shang logo and select the duration of your shopping time. After being matched with a Kuya or Ate, you can discuss payment options. If it’s less than PHP 1,000.00, the personal shopper can pay for the items first. If the purchase is more than PHP 1,000.00, they will drop by your place first to get the money. Service fees will be deducted from the registered Visa or Mastercard.

Though COVID-19 continues to affect our way of life, Shangri-La Plaza makes sure to be responsive to shoppers’ needs, at the mall or online, during the new normal. To keep updated on everything Shang, including store openings, delivery options, and other information, follow and regularly check its social media pages, and join the Viber community at

For inquiries, call 8-370-2597/98 or visit Follow the Shang on Instagram: @shangrilaplazaofficial. 

Friday, July 10, 2020

STATE OF WORLD POPULATION 2020 Putting the Brakes on COVID-19: How to safeguard the health and rights of women and girls now

POPCOM Undersecretary for Population and Development and Executive Director, Hon. Juan Antonio A. Perez III, MD officially opens the event to commemorate World Population Day and launch the State of World Population (SWOP) 2020 Report.

UNFPA in the Philippines launched the State of World Population Report and commemorated the World Population Day together with POPCOM
10 JULY 2020, MANILA, the Philippines The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) in the Philippines, together with the Philippine Commission on Population and Development (POPCOM), commemorated the World Population Day (11 July) through a virtual event broadcasted online. Featuring eminent policymakers such as the Secretary of Health Dr. Francisco Duque III, Philippine Commission on Women Chairperson Ms. Rhodora M. Bucoy, and Commissioner on Human Rights Ms. Karen Lucia Gomez-Dumpit, the joint event of UNFPA Philippines and POPCOM unpacked and discussed major vulnerabilities and harmful practices experienced by women and girls, and how the COVID-19 pandemic has intensified these. The online event also featured a virtual hand-over of UNFPA’s global State of World Population (SWOP) Report 2020 to Undersecretary and Executive Director of POPCOM, Dr. Juan Antonio “Jeepy” Perez III.

Every year, millions of girls are subjected to practices that harm them physically and emotionally, with the full knowledge and consent of their families, friends, and communities, according to the SWOP Report 2020, published by the headquarters of UNFPA, the United Nations’ sexual and reproductive health agency.

The UNFPA report entitled “Against My Will: Defying the Practices That Harm Women and Girls and Undermine Equality” has identified at least 19 harmful practices, ranging from breast ironing to virginity testing, as human rights violations, and focused on the three most prevalent ones: female genital mutilation, son preference, and child marriage.

“Harmful practices against girls cause profound and lasting trauma, robbing them of their right to reach their full potential,” said UNFPA Executive Director Dr. Natalia Kanem.

While progress had been made in ending some harmful practices worldwide, the COVID-19 pandemic threatened to reverse gains. A recent analysis revealed that if services and programmes remain shuttered for six months, an additional 13 million girls may be forced into marriage.

“In the Philippines, even before the outbreak of COVID-19, 1 out of 6 Filipino girls married before 18. And because the effects of this pandemic and quarantine measures are disrupting those efforts to end child marriage, we may actually see even a further increase in child marriage,” Mr. Iori Kato, UNFPA Country Representative in the Philippines, alerted. “Maternal deaths, unintended pregnancies, unmet need for modern contraceptives, and gender-based violence could all increase significantly, compared to pre-COVID in 2019”.

On the occasion of this year’s World Population Day with the theme of “Putting the Brakes on COVID-19: How to safeguard the health and rights of women and girls now,” Mr. Gustavo Gonz├ílez, the newly-appointed United Nations Resident Coordinator and the Humanitarian Coordinator in the Philippines, underscored:

“What we have been observing in the country and globally, is the tremendous impact of the pandemic on women and girls. Looking after the health of women does not only mean ensuring their protection from the coronavirus; but also ensuring that women are able to access a wide range of services, including reproductive health and family planning information and services as a matter of choice and human right.”

The online event presented the preliminary results of an analysis that the University of the Philippines Population Institute (UPPI) had recently conducted with UNFPA about the impact of COVID-19 and quarantines on Filipino women’s and girls’ sexual and reproductive health and freedom from violence. The study revealed that the COVID-19 pandemic and disruptions in access to essential services could result in increasing the annual maternal deaths to 3,200, 26% higher than the pre-COVID 2019, as well as in a significant increase in unplanned pregnancies, including among thousands of teenage girls. Domestic violence is also expected to increase as women and girls are stuck in the same home as their abusive partners, although many of them would be unreported.
POPCOM Executive Director Dr. “Jeepy” Perez emphasized, “Despite the challenges, there are policies, measures, laws and numerous other efforts in place adherent to the Philippines’ commitments made in the Nairobi Summit on the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) where the Philippines was a staunch supporter as a signatory 25 years ago. While there are observable great strides in our population and development goals, more needs to be done, especially at this time when COVID-19 can derail the work we have strived so hard to accomplish.”

On World Population Day 2020, POPCOM and UNFPA vow to strengthen their partnership to support women’s and girls’ unique needs faced during the pandemic, working with various national, regional, and local governments and NGOs in the Philippines. To enable this, UNFPA Philippines is appealing for USD 11 million or 549 million Pesos of additional resources as part of the UN Global Humanitarian Response Plan for COVID-19.

ALFAMART Collaboration: Business Growth in the New Normal

Justin Chua is a 4th generation owner of the iconic Diao Eng Chay deli in Binondo. Through their partnership with Alfamart, more people outside Chinatown were introduced to their legendary delicacies.
The economic downturn brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic can never be overstated. In the wake of the disease – and the quarantines implemented to control it – countless businesses have been forced to cease operations, and ultimately, close shop.

Of course, there are those who are fortunate enough to survive. However, as the economy continues to bear the brunt of diminished consumer spending, even mere survival is becoming a challenge. The prospect of sustained growth seems to be on another level entirely.
Alfamart, the first and only Super Minimart chain in the country, has always believed that collaborations and partnerships are the keys to growth, especially during trying times.
“Partnerships have been a key component and core foundation of Alfamart’s progress,” said Alfamart Philippines Chief Operating Officer Harvey Ong. “Ever since we started in 2014, we have been collaborating with landowners, lessors, suppliers, and partner consignees to make sure we can give the best selection and service to our customers,” he continued.
As far as Ong is concerned, an alliance can only be called a true partnership if the benefits apply to all stakeholders. A prime example of this is their tie-up with DECS, a spin-off of the original Diao Eng Chay Chinese deli of Binondo fame.
Daughter-and-mother team, Eryll (left) and Eunette Ong (right) are the proprietors of Earle’s Treats and the Bakeshop16 brand. Their baked goods, especially the Super Cheesy Bread and Garlic Cheese Bread, have become favorites of Alfamart’s patrons.

Justin Chua, a 4th generation owner of DECS, was a former Alfamart employee who was inspired to start his own business. When he was starting DECS, he saw it fit to partner with Alfamart so that their products could reach more people.
“Partnering with Alfamart helped DECS achieve its main objectives,” Chua explained. “Our market reach has expanded considerably, and we have been given an opportunity and a channel to introduce DECS products to non-Filipino-Chinese.”
DECS’ lumpia, dimsum, and pies were a big hit with Alfamart’s customers and introduced the legendary Diao Eng Chay lumpia, dimsum, and pies to a whole new audience.
“DECS’ growth climbed faster than we imagined,” Chua enthused.
Another Alfamart partner-success story is Bakeshop16, a baked goods and pastry supplier. The proprietors, mom Eunette Ong and her daughters Erica and Eryll, believe that working with Alfamart gave their young business a good boost, especially with their brand equity.
“Being associated with Alfamart helps in building the consumers’ perception towards Bakeshop16,” Eryll said. She also pointed out that the partnership came with exciting challenges that became opportunities for growth.
“Our partnership with Alfamart encouraged us to learn more about production and logistics,” she explained. “Nowadays, with careful planning and close coordination with Alfamart, we are able to build an even stronger partnership with them. Thus, we are still growing with Alfamart,” she underscored.
Alfamart’s partnerships with DECS and Bakeshop16 have allowed the entrepreneurs behind them to look past the present challenges. “Through collaboration, we are able to maintain our growth-oriented perspective, instead of the prevailing survival-oriented one,” the Alfamart COO emphasized. “We are always driven by our advocacy of community development and service. Of course, that extends to our partners as well. We should always be lifting each other up, no matter what happens,” Ong concluded.
To know more about how to become a supplier for Alfamart, please visit

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